Happy Friday and thank you for coming by! Today I am going back to my roots of the south, with a twist. These recipe features two of my very favorite foods: fried green tomatoes and bacon!! Growing up, BLTs were not a favorite thing of mine, I actually couldn't understand why my mother loved them so much. Then one day, actually last summer, I was attacked by subliminal messages on twitter when everywhere I looked, there was a recipe for a BLT. I went CRAZY!! I made one and then couldn't stop making them. The freshness of the tomato and crisp lettuce, the salty, crunch bacon and that butter toasty bread that it's all sandwiched in between...I need a moment!
With fried green tomatoes, I can't remember a time I didn't enjoy them. I am a huge fried food fan, which is why I have a rule in house that I do not fry. Until I made these. I find that when I fry things, I eat all of it! Now with these, my excuse was that inside the crispy, savory crust was a vegetable which is basically 0 calories, so it's cool. Right? And these vegetables sing! They are coated with a mixture of corn flour and bread crumbs which gives them incredible texture, then fried in a cast iron skillet to ensure even and controlled heat with the fry oil. This gives you a perfectly golden brown tomato that is crunchy and delicious.
Once I had all of my bacon done (I had to do it a second time because I burned the first batch...smh), I made a roasted red pepper aioli to round these out. The sauce adds a tangy, smoky flavor that enhances the bacon and tomato in a way that will keep you coming back for more. I then decided to turn the fried green tomato into the buns of the BLT. Because when you have something this delicious, why compromise with just 1 stuck in the middle of a sandwich?!
I ended up sharing these with the leasing staff in my building and got rave reviews. But I have to admit it was hard letting them out of my possession. I probably would have had more for myself if I hadn't eaten a few of the tomatoes when they were cooling. For testing purposes, you know?
What are your thoughts on the vegetable and sandwich of the summer?
Fried Green Tomato BLT
- Author: Monique
- Yield: Makes 4 BLT Sandwiches
- Nutrition per 1 sandwich: 296 calories, 34.2g net carbs, 12.58g fat, 9.28g protein
- 2 green tomatoes
- 1/4 cup corn starch (GF)
- 1 cup cornmeal (GF)
- 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs (GF)
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp hot smoked paprika
- 1/4 tsp onion powder
- 1/8 tsp ground mustard
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 2 tbsp hot sauce
- 4 slices bacon, cooked crispy and halved
- 1/4 cup red pepper aioli*
- 4 bibs of lettuce
- Oil for frying
- First, start off by setting up your battering stations. There are two ways to do this:
- Set up 3 shallow dishes in order of cornstarch - buttermilk - bread crumbs/panko/seasonings mix
- Set up a station as follows: brown paper bag of cornstarch - shallow dish of buttermilk - brown paper bag of bread crumbs/panko/seasonings mix
- I prefer the 2nd method, but used the first for this recipe.
- Next, slice your tomatoes about 1/2-1 inch thick and salt and pepper both sides of the tomato.
- Dip your tomato into the cornstarch to get it coated, then into the buttermilk, then into the bread crumbs and place on a sheet of parchment or on a baking rack fitted over a sheet. Continue until all of your tomatoes are coated.
- Heat about 1/2 inches of fry oil in a deep skillet over medium-high heat. When oil appears to shake, sprinkle some of your fry mixture into the oil. If it fries, your oil is ready.
- Carefully lower your tomato into the oil. The oil should come up up just over half of the tomato. Fry until side is golden brown, about 4 minutes. Flip and repeat on the other side.
- Remove tomato from oil and put on a rack in a baking sheet fitted with paper towels to catch the oil.
- Season immediately with a pinch salt.
- Once drained and cool enough to handle, assemble sandwiches by placing a tomato on a plate. Add a spoonful of aioli to tomato the add with lettuce. Add bacon and top with other tomato. To secure, place a toothpick through the sandwich.Repeat until all sandwiches are complete.
*For a quick recipe of red pepper aioli, combine my red pepper sauce with mayo. Get the recipe for the sauce here!*